Blake Bennett

MHS' Bennett signs with Tulane

MHS' Bennett signs with Tulane - Blake BennettMandeville High infielder, Blake Bennett, has signed a national letter of intent to attend Tulane University on a baseball scholarship.

Bennett said that Tulane and Louisiana State University were his top two choices, but the University of New Orleans and Ole Miss. also showed interest.

Seated is Mandeville senior Blake Bennett, who recently signed a national letter of intent to attend Tulane University to play middle infield for the Green Wave. Shown, standing, from left are: Larry Maddin (Bennett's grandfather), Kevin Bennett, Mandeville principal Bruce Bundy, Mandeville coach Matt Brown, Cindy Bennett and Gayle Maddin. (Staff Photo By Chris Kinkaid)

He talked about what went into his decision.

"From the beginning, I wanted to go to Tulane or LSU. Tulane pretty much offered it to me and I was ready to go there. A bunch of my friends go to Tulane, so that weighed into my decision. I'm really looking forward to playing there," said Bennett.

He said that he is going to Tulane on a baseball scholarship. Bennett had been told that he will play a middle infield position, but prefers second base. He said he just wants to get into games. Bennett said Green Wave five-year recruiting coordinator and three-year Associate head coach Mark Kingston helped bring him to Tulane. Bennett said that Kingston has been calling to check on him and to see how things are going.

During the American Legion Baseball season last summer, Bennett hit .306 and had a .952 fielding percentage, helping his team to an undefeated district season last year and a 23-5 overall record.

In the 2006 district season, Bennett hit .295 with a .380 on base percentage in 44 at bats, while swiping three bases in as many attempts.

Bennett's current coach Matt Brown said he is excited about his senior's future and his progression at Mandeville.

"I think it's a great opportunity for Blake. He's going to have to work really hard, but I believe that he's got that type of mentality. He's a very hard worker and I feel he'll fit into that program very nicely. He plays a position that is vital to us and it's always tough to replace guys. Blake started quite a few games as a sophomore and has had success here," said Brown.

"Blake has always been a good defensive player. His biggest improvement has been his increase in speed, base running and his hitting. His hitting has increased a lot since he came to the program. Blake has put a lot of hard work into that," added Brown.

The Skipper coach talked about coaching Bennett.

"Blake's a good kid. He does what you ask of him. He's always respectful when he responds to you, which is a coach's dream. He wants to learn and if there is something he doesn't understand, he wants to find out about it. He's always coachable and coaches like to talk about that. Blake has a good attitude and is able to be a leader," said Brown.

His cousin and current teammate Jay Morris will be playing at cross-town rival, UNO. Bennett spoke on playing against his cousin.

"It's going to be fun. Hopefully we win, but he gets a few hits, so we can both be happy," said Bennett.

He said his favorite baseball player is New York Yankees' shortstop Derek Jeter and he explained why.

"I love the fact that he is not cocky. He's awesome; he can play shortstop or any other position. He's a great player," said Bennett.

Bennett thanked his family, former Mandeville baseball coach Carey Stockton, Brown, Chris Westcott, Brandt Quick, Kurt Hester and hitting instructor Scott Lambert.

Blake is the son of Kevin and Cindy Bennett, who reside in Mandeville.

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